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Trump says he will accept GOP nomination at the White House

Posted at 10:18 AM, Aug 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-14 12:26:04-04

President Trump said Thursday that he will deliver his acceptance speech for the Republican nomination for president at the White House, flouting critics who called the location inappropriate for a campaign address.

"I'll probably be giving my speech at the White House because it is a great place. It's a place that makes me feel good, it makes the country feel good," Mr. Trump said in an interview with the New York Post published Thursday evening. He added that he would deliver the speech outside "on one of the lawns" so people could practice social distancing guidelines. He said that there could be a "big group of people" to attend his address, despite the threat of the coronavirus.

"We could have quite a group of people. It's very big, a very big lawn. We could have a big group of people," Mr. Trump said.

Mr. Trump's announcement came after the U.S. Office of Special Counsel confirmed federal law does not preclude the president from delivering his acceptance speech at the White House.

"The president and the vice president are not covered by any provisions of the Hatch Act," Erica Hamrick, deputy chief of the office's Hatch Act Unit, said in a letter Wednesday. "Accordingly, the Hatch Act does not prohibit President Trump from delivering his RNC acceptance speech on White House grounds."

The president had debated between giving his address at the White House or at Gettysburg. Mr. Trump told the Post that he would hold an event at Gettysburg at "a later date."